Motorsailer vs Yacht to live on

westernman

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Just to set your mind in a slightly different direction.
Examine your motives for wondering about living on a boat.
Is it to travel, is it to not live in a house etc.
Think about a canal boat or a motorhome or maybe a static caravan. All offer a similar experience for less cost than a boat in a marina.
Good luck.
A 65 ft wide beam canal boat is real luxury compared to living on a 30ft sailing boat.
 

Wansworth

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The image of the boat dweller is varied through history,usually the scum of the earth or the poor aseparate race ,shunned by the majority like the canal bargees who we collected presents for their children at Christmas in the late 1950s.The cinemar offered us mainly men who are on the edge of society pirates or odd ball detectives it’s the place to have your hero live if you want him or her to be different.The reality of living on a boat in the Uk is not particularly glamorous and basically damp except for a few summers days😏
 

westernman

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The image of the boat dweller is varied through history,usually the scum of the earth or the poor aseparate race ,shunned by the majority like the canal bargees who we collected presents for their children at Christmas in the late 1950s.The cinemar offered us mainly men who are on the edge of society pirates or odd ball detectives it’s the place to have your hero live if you want him or her to be different.The reality of living on a boat in the Uk is not particularly glamorous and basically damp except for a few summers days😏
Something like this would be a bit better.....

Vente Dutch Barge 22m occasion - Bateau à Moteur Péniche / Habitation à Canal du Midi, France | Youboat FR
 

Wansworth

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Best place I have been to live aboard was Chichester marina,beautiful warm wet rooms for showers ,on site laundry nearby city to escape to.With modern stuff like dehumidifiers and small heaters life can be good😂
 

Skylark

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I am just browsing (cheap) sail boats that I can live on.

……….. was looking for a sail boat somethiing like a Beneteau Oceanis Clipper 361.
Back to the OP. A pal of mine left UK shores 7 years ago with his 361. He’s currently preparing to transit the Panama Canal for the Pacific. I had a 361 for 10 years prior to buying my current 41. Lovely boats.
 

ColourfulOwl

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I actually bought a 1999 Beneteau Oceanis Clipper 361 in July of last year, with pretty much the same plan as you've mentioned. It is my first ever boat and I took her out a handful of times before passing my day skipper in September. I looked at boats for a good year before deciding to buy to figure out what I wanted, including doing a handful of day sails and just speaking to people in marina's - it's amazing how many people will just invite you on board to have a snoop around.

Due to the weather I've only been able to get out on her a handful of times, 7 in total since buying her, crossing Morecambe Bay in the Irish sea each time.

I'm a solo sailor with the plan of doing various updates and tweaks to the boat over the next few years as I build my confidence before moving aboard. I've found the 361 to be pretty much perfect for my personal needs. I went for the 2 cabin layout, which gives me a huge galley and massive amount of storage - the port locker I can lay down in and not be touching the bulk heads, and I can stand in it and close the seat. I'm 6'2 so having standing headroom through out was a big thing for me, and the 361 delivers on that, only needing to duck slightly at doors. All of the berths have plenty of leg room and are pretty big. On my boat I personally sleep in the saloon as there is an infill for the curved seating section that makes a large single / small double.

The heads is huge on the 361, with stranding headroom, but not without fault. The shower section of the heads is forward, but the boat is naturally trimmed aft, this means if you shower down below the water runs to the aft part of the heads, away from the sump!!!! There is no lip in the floor at the shower section to stop the water running all the way after but the toilet, locker and door sill are all about 2/3 foot raised, so it's not a huge deal. It's a design oversight, but wasn't a deal breaker for me. I just have a squeegee on a pole to push the water toward the pump post shower. The toilet itself is on a 45 degree angle directly behind the door to the heads. This makes it a very tight squeeze when using the toilet, my knees get right crammed into the back of the door. Long term I'm likely to redesign the layout on the boat to put the toilet where the shower is, move the sink to the current toilet location and put some shelves in place in the middle to make the space more useful. But as it comes it's perfectly serviceable and does the job.

I've personal found the sailing performance for the 361 to be really strong too. In 12-15 knots I can easily get the boat into the 6-8 knots from the wind + 1 or 2 knots of tide. And that's with my little amount of experience. All lines are led to the cockpit, which makes it feel safe and secure when out sailing. I've got a stackpack so the only time I need to head forward is to pull the last part of the main sail down. During my sea trail with the boat we got to 9.8 knots in 18 knots of wind - the previous owner had 40+ years of sailing experience so properly knew how to handle her. She has a winged keel, which means she only drafts 1.5m but has a lot of lead down low. She can heel a fair amount being relatively flat bottomed, but no where near as much as the performance sailing yacht I did my day skipper on. Everyone I've spoken too has loved being on the 361 as its really comfortable and stable at sea and doesn't have a huge amount rolling - and I'm someone who suffers with sea sickness saying that.

My boat came with lots of the extra things though that just make being onboard more comfortable, especially for my future plans. Diesel heater, electric windless, hot water, hydraulic autopilot etc etc. You can't beat having a good hot shower after spending 4-5 hours beating to icey winds in the Irish sea.

There are lots of people who will tell you not to touch a production boat, they won't last, it'll fall apart the first time it see's a wave. yad yad yad. In reality, these days, more production boats cross oceans every year then non-production boat ever have. Just take a look at the transatlantic ARC. Regarding the Bene 361 specifically, there are multiple document cases of these boats crossing the Atlantic, YouTube channels such as See the little things and Sailing bacchus home, have both documented their voyages across the pond.

There are some absolute dogs of boats out there. I would 100% recommend browsing around and seeing what you like and what you don't. I would also suggest not buying the absolute bargain basement boats you can find. You'll end up spending more on repairs anyway, everything boat upgrade/maintenance just costs way more then you think, and you'll end up hating it because you'll spend more time repairing and replacing thing then you will actually enjoy cruising. When it comes to figuring out sail or motor. Think about what you intend to do with the boat. If you only want to potter around where the boat is and not really go the distance, then go with a motorboat as you might be able to get one with more space etc. If you want to do some mileage, like cross and ocean or get to the Caribbean, then sailboat is the way.

I bought my bene 361 for pretty much market value at the time. The previous owner purchased the boat 8 years prior, for £10k less then what I paid for it. He actually made money on the boat... That's unheard of. But that is a sign of the current market for boats. If you find a boat you like, take a look at the same model on the various different yacht selling websites. Add up the cost and average it out. This will get you 90% of the way there for what the market value is. Take off 10-20% of that and you'll be at the market value. People usually try to pay under market value, but I had no issues paying a slightly higher cost as I knew the boat was solid and well looked after by the previous 2 owners, yes I'm the only the 3rd owner of a 1999 boat.
 
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